Whenever possible, A Global Voice for Autism provides in-person training and support to families of children with autism in conflict-affected communities. However, in high-conflict areas and active war zones, we are not always able to reach the families we serve in person. This virtual autism program will provide training and remote support to 50 refugee families on the move through low-bandwidth training seminars, 1:1 consultancy hours with autism professionals and virtual support groups.
Conflict can be traumatic for everyone. This is especially true for children with autism and their families, due to the unpredictability of life in conflict and the instability that often accompanies migration to safety. Like all children, these children deserve to have the opportunity to learn to express themselves and communicate independently. However, in high-conflict areas, it is difficult to safely provide and access in-person autism support services.
This project will connect refugee autism families to virtual training and support services that will equip parents with the skills to help their children develop communication skills and will provide support to entire families. It will also connect families to others with similar experiences so that they can offer peer support and learn from each others' experiences.
By disseminating knowledge about autism support to the families who need it most, the quality of life of children with autism whose lives are affected by conflict will increase. These children will be able to develop methods of communication that can be used to express and process their experiences and parents' ability to provide support to their children will improve through participation in communities of support as well as through knowledge about how to support their children.